Georgia - Birthplace of cheese as well?
13 November, 2014
Georgia - Birthplace of cheese as well?
On November 8th, Expo-Georgia hosted a cheese exhibition. Georgian cheese is one of the oldest food products in the world. Nobody argues anymore that Georgia is the birthplace of wine but the latest discoveries may acknowledge that our homeland is the birthplace of cheese as well. Cheese jars and milk vessels as well as some ritual figures made of cheese that date back to VI-IV millennia B.C. have been discovered in Georgia. Such discoveries popularize Georgian cheese and the restoration
of types of cheese that were lost centuries ago. This may enable Georgian cheese to become established in Europe.


The cheese-lovers could taste and buy different types of cheese, participate in the process of cheesemaking and watch the process of making of Elarji and Tashmabaji by specialists.
At this year’s festival, every region of Georgia presented about 60 types of cheese including some rare and unusual kinds about which the majority of Georgians had never heard before. Among them, Dambal-Khacho (soaked cottage-cheese), Muchli, Guda, Chechili, Chogi, Tenili, Narchvi, Lagujishi, Sulguni, Berqeizi, cheese kept in honey and wine, cheese rolls stuffed with Beshumuri, Chachamodebuli, goat-milk cheese, etc. Many of these varieties date back several centuries.
All in all there are about 180 types of cheese known in Georgia. Many of them are not produced today. Only the recipes are preserved.
One could observe a special gathering of guests at the Guda cheese stand. Everybody was keen to learn how this unique cheese was made. We, the guests of the festival, requested that the host, Grandpa Tedo reveal the secret:
“100 years ago, the Guda cheese of Tusheti was made out of milk without removing the cream. Thanks to this it was distinguished for its fatness and it was very delicious. Unfortunately, sometimes this obligatory condition isn’t observed today. Traditionally, the skin for keeping cheese was made out of sheepskin and the Tushetians skinned the sheep in a special way, not cutting its belly, contrary to ‘butcher-skinning.’ Then they inserted a Y-shaped stick inside in order to keep the skin stretched and dried it. Later, for making the ‘guda,’ the skin for keeping cheese, they shaved the wool and soaked the skin, glue the cut places and tied the legs with a rope, leaving the fat-tail part open for putting the cheese in. Then they turned the skin inside out, in order to have the hairy part inside, and the ‘guda’ is ready. This is what gives the Guda cheese its specific smell.”
Then grandpa Tedo stopped and gave us his cheese to taste. Noticing our appreciation he continued:
“If you publish everything in your newspaper, everybody will learn how to make this cheese, so I’ll keep something back.”
The festival organizers also managed to see to the ‘chadi’ (maize-bread) lovers. This type of bread is mostly eaten together with cheese and in the exhibition halls you could have maize bread as well as hot ‘shoti’ or wheat bread. Chadi is made from maize flour. It’s interesting to note that despite the fact that maize isn’t a native Georgian crop – it was introduced to Georgia in the medieval centuries – ‘chadi’ is considered to be one of the most appealing dishes of Georgian cuisine.

The Guda (cheese kept in sheep-skin) has holes and the middle part of it has yellowish glitter. This yellowness is an indication that it is made from natural milk without removing the cream. The yellowish-greenish color is an indication that it is made from sheep’s milk. With the help of this we can visually differentiate it from the cow’s milk cheese, the middle part of which has no greenish color. In summer Guda cheese is considered to be outdated. The fresh cheese arrives from the mountains in autumn when the shepherds bring the sheep to the plains.

Photo: Nikusha Vasadze

Related story:

Cheese festival in Tbilisi – Representing 80 centuries of Georgian cheese making

Print
Other Stories
International Festival of classical music to be held in Batumi
At the end of this week an International Festival of classic music will kick off for the 6th time in Batumi, Georgia’s beautiful seaside city.
Georgians who beat the world record
There are many Georgians among the world recordsmen. Georgians managed to beat the world record for 78 times to date. Today we explore four of them.
Jenny Brunt speaks about Georgia with Georgian Journal
Jenny Brunt is among the most famous models worldwide. She used to be on the covers of different international magazines in the 1990s.
Tako Natsvlishvili wearing Pain de Sucre - photographed by David Bellemere
Tako Natsvlishvili is a 19-yeal old model from Georgia. She has recently been photographed by a prominent French photographer David Bellemere.
Former Georgian plastic surgeon who owns a restaurant in New York
Maia Acquaviva is a Georgian former surgeon, who worked in one of the clinics here in Tbilisi, but decided to go to the USA and start a business there.
David Beckham first saw Victoria Adams in Tbilisi
Tbilisi is truly a magical city. It brings many people and cultures together, even connects future spouses. Do you think we are joking? Not at all.
Georgia should be at the top of every travel destination list – says German photographer about Georgia
The German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits Georgia tomorrow and possibly as a result of this visit the German media is currently writing a lot about Georgia.
Alexander Julakidze - Georgian pianist based in Jerusalem
A well-known Georgian pianist Alexander Julakidze has successfully participated in a variety of piano competitions. He currently lives in Jerusalem, Israel contributing to Georgia’s popularity all over the world.
Anna Kendrick in David Koma’s dress
The readers of the Georgian Journal will definitely have heard about David Koma, a young and talented Georgian designer based in London.
Medical tourism increases in Georgia
In the first quarter of 2018, Georgia was visited by 13 900 foreigners for medical and recovery purposes. The level is 61.2 % higher than the same period in 2017.
Rebellious and successful Georgian model based in Barcelona
Remember we told you a story this week about a Georgian model Paloma Anastasia Mikadze, who currently is based in Barcelona and is quite successful there?
Georgian Rubik’s Cube solver Vako Marchilashvili breaks the Guinness World Record
Vako Marchilashvili is a young Rubik’s Cube solver from Georgia. He participated in “Georgia’s Got Talent 2017 “and introduced his genius abilities to the Georgian public.
Turkish born Georgian sisters sing a beautiful song
There are many Georgians, who live in Turkey, but maintain Georgian culture and heritage.
What types of transport can Georgia offer tourists?
Train, subway, bus, mini-bus, taxi and airplane – these are the types of transport that Georgia can offer tourists.
Chris Botti to perform in Georgia
American trumpeter Chris Botti arrived in Georgia yesterday. Today the musician is due to perform with the Georgian singer Nani Bregvadze.
Georgian schoolchildren create Robot “Vano”
Georgian students from the Guivy Zaldastanishvili American Academy in Tbilisi have created a robot named Vano.
Khatia Buniatishvili performs with the Estonian Festival Orchestra at the Proms in London
On the 13th of August, Paavo Järvi and the Estonian Festival Orchestra performed at the Royal Albert Hall in London during its famous Proms season.
Paloma Anastasia Mikadze, an Instagram star from Georgia
Anastasia Mikadze is a Georgian social network star from Georgia. She shares her ideas about fashion, interior design and healthy lifestyle with hundreds of followers on Instagram.
Georgian lifeguard who saved life of nearly 700 people
Gocha Bilvanidze, the Head of the Maritime Rescue Service has been with the organization for eight years now. He has saved the lives of around 700 people during that time.
Children of Georgian migrant to the USA Parten Chikviladze (Peter Chiglo) visit Georgia
A 16-year Parten Chikviladze from Racha (the western part of Georgia) left Georgian 1913 for America, never to return back.
 Surprising proposal by a Georgian Soldier
The video of a Georgian Cadet Soldier’s proposal to his girlfriend has gone viral on the social media. He proposed to her in the presence of other soldiers in front of the Academy.
The 10th anniversary of the 2008 war through a young graphic designer’s eye
A 23-year old Nika Chalakhshasvhili is a graphic designer from Georgia. He has created some interesting illustrations to express his protest against the Russian occupation of Georgian territory:
Georgian policewomen: stereotypes and reality
The number of female members in the Security Forces is increasing year after year.
Georgian entrant who got top marks in two subjects
Devi Oniani is a graduate of the 55th Public School, Tbilisi, Georgia.
What is behind the collection “Family and War” by Demna Gvasalia
A Georgian fashion designer, the Creative Director of Balenciaga and Head Designer at Vetements, presented a collection named “Family and War” during Paris Fashion Week.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Exchange Rates
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
21.09.2018
22.09.2018
USD
1
USD
2.6193
2.6216
EUR
1
EUR
3.0693
3.0854
GBP
1
GBP
3.4651
3.4584
RUB
100
RUB
3.9538
3.9340
Other Stories
World famous British singer Jessie J has decided to wear clothes made by Anouki Areshidze, Georgian designer and wife of the mayor of Tbilisi.
Bassiani, one of the most popular underground clubs not only in Georgia but throughout Europe as well, has opened today
An amazing video made in Georgia by tourists from the Philippines have gone viral on the internet.
Over the recent two days May 12-13 Tbilisi city saw a peaceful protest rally in the center of the city.
Hundreds of people took to the main street Rustaveli Avenue in Tbilisi to protest the raid in Tbilisi’s popular night clubs.
Two bear cubs listed as endangered on the red list were handed over to Tbilisi Zoo,
Tbilisi Mayor Kakha Kaladze and Deputy Tbilisi Mayor Ms. Sophio Khuntsaria have gifted a food stand
Pamela Anderson, famous Canadian American actress and model has appeared in the chic sunglasses by internationally acclaimed Georgian designer George Keburia.
A ski lift accident in Georgia’s eastern Gudauri resort,in particular at Sadzele 5 lift, has left 8 people with injuries.
The ski lift in Gudauri winter resort in Georgia has broke down in the aftermath of which several people have been injured.
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.6216
EUR
1
EUR
3.0854
GBP
1
GBP
3.4584
RUB
100
RUB
3.9340